Passage: 1Peter 1:1~2  

Key verse: 1-2


Peter was the shepherd of God's flock. Jesus called him 'Rock' and helped him grow to be the spiritual leader of his church. His final words to Peter were, 'Feed my sheep' and 'Follow me.' Paul calls him the apostle to the Jews, and so he was, for the earliest Christians were Jews. But Peter was the one through whom God opened a door to the Gentile world (Ac 10, 11,15). After Stephen's martyrdom, Peter stayed in Jerusalem, and from there, traveled about in Judea and Samaria shepherding God's flock (Ac 8-12). At the time of James' death at the hands of Herod, Peter was also imprisoned. His life was spared because of the prayers of the church and God's miraculous intervention. He traveled more widely after this. Peter was not an organization man or a church politician; he was a shepherd. His spiritual leadership in the church was unquestioned.

This first letter was written from 'Babylon' (possibly Rome, probably not) (1Pe 5: 13). He writes to believers scattered throughout Asia Minor by persecution. He wrote to encourage people suffering for Jesus' sake and the gospel's. He reminds us that Jesus suffered for us. He tells us that those who challenge the non-Christian world with their obedient lifestyle and with the gospel can expect to suffer too.

1. God's elect (1)

God's people were scattered by persecution throughout the world. God turned the suffering of his people into victory, for he used his scattered people as missionaries to evangelize the world. Peter called them strangers in the world--not only because they had to live as aliens in foreign countries, but also because their true citizenship was in heaven. They and we are strangers and aliens in the world.

2. Chosen for obedience (2)

God calls us for obedience to Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit applies the blood of Christ to our sinful hearts and lives and we are sanctified--forgiven, cleansed and molded into Christ's image by God's grace.

Prayer: Lord, thank you for choosing me for obedience to Jesus Christ, and for cleansing and forgiving me through his blood, by the work of the Holy Spirit. Help me not to run from suffering, but to live as a stranger in the world.

One Word: Strangers in the world